100 lb. Club - How did everyone pick their ultimate goal weight?

02-19-2005, 12:00 PM
For me, originally I wanted to be my high school senior graduation weight of 200ish. (It was actually 195 if I remember right). I'm 5'11" so even though that seems like a lot as an ultimate goal, that's what I thought I should be.

I've reevaluated since though. I decided if I'm going to work this hard and lose 150 lbs, I might as well lose 172 and be at the top of the height/weight scale for my height, which is 178. A lofty goal perhaps and I may change my mind when I get closer but that's my current ultimate goal.

So how did you all decide?

02-19-2005, 05:06 PM
I've never been within the weight range for my height/weight/age/gender, at least not since I was a toddler. In the past, trying to lose weight always meant looking at that range and picking a number within it as my goal. Of course, I never got there, never got within shouting distance. Over the years my weight crept up and up, interrupted by small dips of temporary weight loss.

When at 339 and the age of 39 I decided to try one more time to lose weight. My main impetus was health -- not just getting healthier through losing weight, but having a healthier mind/body through healthier attitudes and habits. I did a lot of seemingly unorthodox things when I started this journey, because I was determined to do what would WORK for me, not just what was typically done. So, one of the first things I did was toss out the idea of having to set a goal within that somewhat fictional recommended weight range. At the time I was sure I was the only person in the world who had thought of this (ha!), but I realized that what I wanted was a healthy life and a reasonable weight that was SUSTAINABLE. It didn't matter if I DID manage to get down to 150 or whatever if I was only going to bounce back up. I didn't wat to burden myself with such a huge goal, either. I decided that if I could get down to 220, I could live with myself. My lowest adult weight had been in the 212 - 215 area, so I thought, OK, I think I may be able to do that, and I could live with that.

So off I went to my first Jenny Craig appointment, wondering if they'd even let me put down a goal weight that wasn't in the recommended range. You coulda knocked me over with a feather ... holy cow, not only were they completely OK with it, I found out it wasn't an uncommon practice. I wasn't entirely convinced I could lose 120ish pounds, but I felt it wasn't out of the question. It was such a relief to NOT be staring at that 163 (the top of my range); that relieved some of the pressure, and this time I was ALL about setting myself up for success.

Already-long-story-a-bit-shorter, as I got down to the mid-200s it was obvious that I had the momentum to get to 220 and even keep going. So, at around 240 I officially lowered my goal to 200. As I cruised into the 210s I lowered it to 190. As I approached 190 I lowered it to 180. Then 170. (I admit I had fantasized about 170 for a long time, because that would represent losing HALF my start weight.) That's my official goal right now but now I KNOW I'm going to try for that magical 163, just to say I did, not because the number MEANS anything other than a symbol of accomplishment. In fact, I may try for 159, because that would be a nice round 180 and would put me below 160, which would be sweet.


Please note that the REAL numbers I pay attention to are body fat %. THAT is the number that tells you how fit you are, and which determines your size more than weight. For example, the last time I had my body composition measured, my LEAN weight was 137. The bottom of my weight range is something like 135! Now, I'll probably lose a little more lean weight as I continue to lose weight, but I always keep in mind that a healthy body fat % for women is generally considered to be 18% to 25%. My REAL goal has ALWAYS been to get under 25%, then to see if I could drop more comfortably. If I didn't lose any more lean weight and did get down to 163, that would give me a body fat % of around 16%!

Do you see where I'm going with all of this?

For those of us who are significantly overweight, especially if we have been overweight a long time, it doesn't pay to think about those end weight goals too much. They're just numbers, and they don't mean a whole lot from this distance. Sure, keep some numbers in the back of your head if you like, but don't get married to them. They don't tell the whole story. I don't even advise getting married to body fat % numbers. Sure, you don't want to be lazy and short-sighted when it comes to setting goals, but on the other hand you don't want to burden yourself with unrealistic expectations or even goals that are too big to carry around mentally. Instead, think about doable, then think about best-case. Work toward the doable, then take a wait-and-see attitude about the rest. I'm currently eating about 1500 calories per day and working out semi-consistently. I go out to eat once or twice a week and have a little wine. I had a delicious shortbread cookie after lunch today at a great French bakery and don't feel a shred of guilt. I enjoy my exercise and I have certain fitness goals I want to work towards, but I don't live at the gym. I'm happy with this lifestyle -- it feels balanced and fulfilling and I don't feel deprived (most of the time) nor gluttonous (ditto). The point at which I have to drop down to 1200 calories and/or workout even more to lose more weight ... well ... that's the point at which I'll probably call it a day.

So, hope this rambling story gave you a little insight into your own process. Don't worry about that end goal yet, you'll know when the time has come to think about it more seriously. The only reason I have thought about it as much as I have is because my membership status at Jenny Craig is based on goal weights, so I have to keep them posted. Just concentrate on the next meal, the next pound, the next ten pounds. Sure, dream and visualize and think about how fun and exciting it will be to be at a healthy weight. But, just don't brand any numbers into your forehead, not just yet.

02-19-2005, 06:53 PM
funniegrrl, you bring up SUCH a good point! About a year ago, I was working out a lot (mostly strength training with only about 10-15 minutes of cardio 4 times a week) and watching what I ate. After about 8 weeks, I had actually decreased my overall fat%/increased my lean or muscle% by 12% (on the same body mass scale at the same gym at the same time of day--they even made me get off and on the scale 3 times because they couldn't believe the numbers!). I had been getting so frustrated because in that whole time, I had only lost about 10 pounds, most of which I had lost early in that time frame. 12% is a HUGE change, and it really opened my eyes to how much my health and body were improving even though the numbers on the scale were not drastically changing. Of course, I have since gained all of it back and then some, and I'm sure morphed my body back into an insanely high fat percentage, but I know I can do it again--especially since I've already done it once before!

02-19-2005, 08:59 PM
I think for me I have too much room for error if I don't set some #. Like I said I don't have a number set in stone to the lb but need a number to set my sights on now. I'm not able to tell myself I'll decide later and be able to go from there. I need am actual weight to look toward. If I decide along the way (which I probably will) that it's too low or high, I'll definitely change it. Not setting a # makes me feel like I'm not going for anything specific. I know for some it's definitely not a specific weight on the scale but as the others have said, a body fat percentage # or the ability to do certain activities. I have goals in those respects too but I'm a numbers kind of a girl. :)

Thanks for your imput!

02-20-2005, 02:23 PM
When I did weight watchers as a teenager (sooo many years ago :lol: ) they told me my goal should be 150 (I'm 5' 9"). I've looked at the height weight charts and they say about 160. I kind of just chose 170. I'm not married to the number. I've been heavy for most of my life, so getting below 200 will be like crossing over into Shangra La for me. I still have a ways to go, so I'm still concentrating on getting past the next 5 lb minigoal. And then each day concentrating on eating on program and getting the exercise in. It's one step at a time.

02-20-2005, 03:24 PM
I've picked my goal based on height/weight/gender charts I have looked at from a variety of sources. It is not etched in stone by any means. I will know better what to shoot for the closer I get to a more 'normal' weight.

02-20-2005, 03:38 PM
I chose the ideal weight for my height and added 15 pounds LOL. Like dragonwoman, it's just a number, I only chose an ideal weight so I could have cool tickery thingy, otherwise my goal is just to be happy, healthy, active and disease free (I am at high risk of type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis). My body fat gets measured at the gym every 8 weeks, so I know that is more what I should be looking at, rather than numbers on the scale. The way they measure your body fat is a tad embarrassing, and involves lying on the floor with one sock off, don't ask me the science behind the tool they use coz I have no idea.

I had a horrible dream the other night that I was at my local swimming pool, and the life guards dragged me off, insisting I had to go into some sort of device with no clothes on the measure my body fat and the number flashed up on the screen for all the thin people to see, and I couldn't show my face again. I faced my fears and went for a swim this morning, which I am happy to say, went without incident :)

Goddess Jessica
02-20-2005, 04:22 PM
kykaree - LOL - that was a bizarre dream!

I have an idea of my ultimate goal weight in mind but, like the other women here, I'll see what happens as I get closer. I know a woman on the weightlifting board who thought her goal weight was much higher than what she ultimately ended up as. She just kept losing until she was comfortable with her body. I'd like to see the scales reach 175. But who knows! :)

02-20-2005, 04:29 PM
I have very strange dreams when I am anxious, and to be honest, I hate exercise. Well, I thought I did. I like exercise itself, but not the things that go along with it, like having to wear a swimsuit, getting hot and sweaty in front of strangers, using communal bathrooms etc. I choose to exercise in gyms and pools because it keeps me honest. I know if I was relying on exercising at home, I wouldn't do it. I have a couple of exercise dvd's but I find them boring and difficult. The healthy eating has been the least of my troubles, I have been exercising regularly now for 2 weeks, and can honestly say I have noticed a huge difference in my attention levels, stress levels and feelings of well-being.

02-20-2005, 10:49 PM
I say right now that my ideal goal weight is around 180 lbs. but again, its hard to say until I get closer to that and see how I feel. I don't really remember how much I weighed at the weight I want to get back to ( I never ever would get on a scale until the past couple years). I chose my weight based on the whole height/weight ration! However, with that said - I'm more concerned about being a healthy size 10-12 :) I'm 5'11 and remember that I looked great at a size 14, just a little overweight so if I could get into a 12 I'd be a very happy girl!

02-21-2005, 10:39 AM
I tend to be careful about ultimate goals, as it's still very far and do not want to get discouraged...I prefer to set small goals (ex: 260 by easter)....

Furthermore, based on the BMI index, ideal weight for me would be around 180-190 pounds, and quite frankly, i do not see myslef at that weight as i'm strong build...I guess 200-210 would be more realistic...

Now as for crieterias for loosing weight, i guess being comfortable both physically and mentally is the main criteria for choosing this ultimate goal...oh and also, i want to look nice naked!!! :D

02-21-2005, 11:46 AM
I only chose an ideal weight so I could have cool tickery thingy, otherwise my goal is just to be happy, healthy, active and disease free:)

Well, I have to admit that that's pretty much how my thinking ran, heh heh, "I want a cool thingy, guess I'd better pick a goal number"

I had a horrible dream the other night that I was at my local swimming pool, and the life guards dragged me off, insisting I had to go into some sort of device with no clothes on the measure my body fat and the number flashed up on the screen for all the thin people to see, and I couldn't show my face again. I faced my fears and went for a swim this morning, which I am happy to say, went without incident :)

Good for you! I love to swim, but the last time I did it was in my brother's pool years ago. I'm sure the thought of seriously swimming in public would generate a naked dream for me too. We have about 10 gyms in a 5 block radius of our apartment, including a Y and Curves. I'm working myself up to the level of self confidence I'll need to join one (I've never been a member of a gym before). I actually have managed to set up and follow a regular exercise routine at home. That said, I do think I'd get a more effective workout in a gym, more bang for the time I put into it. I see it coming in the near future. Howie is inspiring me.

02-21-2005, 12:44 PM
My doctor said she would like to see me at least get under 200lbs. According to the charts, I should be about 145 for my height (5'7") and frame size (med). I don't know if I'll ever see 145, frankly I don't care. I would be happy to get under 160. So for now, I decided to change my goal weight to 160 and go from there.

02-21-2005, 03:18 PM
I chose 160lbs because it would give me about a 25BMI which is the highest a "normal weight" person can be. I don't necessarily feel the need to be a skinny-minnie. I may chose to go lower when I get there, but, I have no idea. :)

02-21-2005, 03:27 PM
For those of you who are using BMI, I hope you understand that those can be wildly inaccurate. The only thing they do is compare weight to height, which is essentially the same as using a height-weight chart that does not take gender, age, or build into account. And neither takes body composition into account. For example, at 177 the calculators say my BMI is 26 -- "overweight." However, my actualy body fat % is 22.6%, which is smack in the middle of the healthy range (18% - 25%).

So, I think using BMI is OK as a preliminary goal, but be aware you'll likely want to reevaluate and refine as you approach it. Again, not a number to be married to but can be useful in a big general ballpark sense.

02-21-2005, 03:31 PM
I'm working myself up to the level of self confidence I'll need to join one (I've never been a member of a gym before). I actually have managed to set up and follow a regular exercise routine at home. That said, I do think I'd get a more effective workout in a gym, more bang for the time I put into it. I see it coming in the near future. Howie is inspiring me.

It took me ages to work up to joining the gym. I spoke to the manager and told him I was really dreading it. They told me the best times to go, and the gym is almost empty when I am there. I really enjoy it once I'm there. I do enjoy my swimming, I would love to find a more private pool, I go to the local council one, and it's always busy.

I admire you being able to exercise from home. We have a tiny house, if we had more space I would have a treadmill and exercise bike at home. The cat gets disturbed when I do my dancing videos!!!! It's probably due to the vibrating floorboards LOL

Goddess Jessica
02-21-2005, 04:47 PM
My dogs go nuts whenever I do an aerobic video at home. And I can just forget doing yoga around them. "mom, why are you upside down. Is this a game? Bark!" My oldest thinks that I'm trying to taunt her whenever I turn on Walk away the Pounds. She freaks out and nips at my heels. It's a crack-up.

02-21-2005, 04:59 PM
In times past when losing weight I set my goal at 135. It was smack dab in the middle of the height-weight charts for me and I have a picture of me playing softball and on the back I weighed 132. Granted I was 10 or 11 at the time. But, I've been this height since I was 9. Well I was actually 5'6" and have since shrunk to 5'5.5". (I keep hoping that when I lose my big bubble butt my height will go back up since I can't stand up straight against the wall with it and that's where that extra 1/2" is at.)

Anyway, I've now set a goal of 150. To be honest with you anything under 200 would put me on cloud 9, but I'm like you and I have to have an ultimate number to shoot for. I do set small goals (currently working toward 245) but if I don't have that final destination to work toward I don't feel like I'm accomplishing anything. I may never see 150 but like I said as long as I continue to eat healthy and exercise and I get down to an acceptable bf% and am under 200, I'll be happy.

02-21-2005, 05:05 PM
In high school I weighed 175ish and my thin friend who was my height weighed 135. That was always my goal. But I am crusing for 40 and somehow a high school weight doesn't seem all that realistic, so I threw on 10 lbs. But I am always open to changing it if need be!! :D

02-22-2005, 05:06 PM
Funniegrrl, you hit the nail on the head about BMI. It always gets under my skin how BMI is the standard measurement, since it doesn't take muscle mass into account. According to the BMI charts, since I'm 5'3, I'm supposed to weigh 121, but it just doesn't parse out. I'm currently about 200 pounds, with a body fat (according to my Tanita) of about 40% (yikes). So that means I'm carrying around 80 pounds of fat. If I lose that, I'm down to my "ideal" weight of 120, but guess what -- with 0% BODY FAT, which isn't healthy or possible!

I guess it opened my eyes when I saw that long-time maintainer Karen (MrsJim) is a size 4 at 5'4 and weighs 145. Seems like a reasonable place for me, if I can ever get there (but that's another story! :lol: )

02-22-2005, 05:45 PM
I basically just picked a number to have a number. If I go by the old height/weight charts, I would be dead before I reached those weights. I am only 5'2", but those charts put me at 104-137 (quite a large range, but still...). I have not weighed in even at the high end of that range since before junior high!

I went to one site that calculated ideal weights, and they had not only the old height/weight chart recommendations, but also what was called a People's Recommendation, which they say is what an average of other people your height/age/etc would describe as their ideal weight. That put me at 170, which I have not weighed in over 14 years! In high school, I consistently weighed in at around 155. I was a size 14, and thought I was absolutely huge. Oh, to be that *huge* again...

I will most likely be changing my goal weight as I go, depending on how I look and feel at that time. I may stop higher than my current goal weight, or I may go lower.